Tuesday, January 02, 2007

New Year's Dip

(photo credit: jamie lewis)
january 2, 2007

Quidi Vidi Gut, New Year's Day. The ritual paddle (if you can call it that) was started years ago by veteran paddler Jim Price (who just happened to be down south this time). A number of us regularly turn up to this small harbour, just minutes from downtown St. John's, and scoot down the icy slipway to celebrate the new year in a proper fashion - on the water.

Quidi Vidi, an historic village first settled in the 16th century and now within the City of St. John's boundary, had retained its appearance for centuries. It still has narrow winding lanes, fishing sheds, old buildings and lots of charm but developers are eagerly gobbling that up by building massive, architecturally-inappropriate homes on and near the waterfront. Geesh, you'd think we'd learn by now that the value resides in what we have and are, not someone else's idea of us.

Okay, back to paddling. It was chilly (ice kept forming on our decks & spray skirts) and a northerly wind gusting upwards of 50km kept a balmy -4C to feeling around -11C. Not cold enough to keep fellow paddler Peter A from trying out his new drysuit by executing a quick roll.

Fellow paddler and blogger Jamie Lewis also has a couple of reports on the day promised. My underwater camera was on the blink so I have none from the day - hopefully Jamie will blog his soon and have shot of the entire gang and harbour.


Michael said...

Good for you for all getting out for a traditional paddle! I was out on the 31th and got a few pics, but yesterday was too horrid to consider heading out.


Steve Weileman said...

Alison, just came across your blog and have enjoyed your writings. A couple of summers ago I had the chance to lead a group with Jim down at his cabin. It was a wonderful time and I'm hoping to get back to NF soon. You can see photos of our trip on my gallery page. Be sure to tell Jim I said hello. Fair winds.

squidink said...

Hello Steve - checked out your gallery - gorgeous - I've not been to that part of the coast, it'll have to be on my list. South coast of the island is spectacular for its fjords, waterfalls, etc. Hope you get opportunity to return and paddle. Check out for trip reports on other parts of south coast. http://www.kayakers.nf.ca/sea_kayaking/trip_reports/gaultoispassagereport.html and http://www.kayakers.nf.ca/sea_kayaking/trip_reports/burgeo%20alexander1.html


Steve Weileman said...

Thanks for the links; I love to read anything that takes me back. Jim lent me some books with the stipulation that I return them in person, so I'll be back...hopefully this summer.

squidink said...

good on Jim - I'll have to remember that one! hope to see you this summer. Alison